A Beginning...

I am beginning my blog and joining the world of blogging after being inspired by a few friends and finally "pushed" by the author of a book I am reading called "The Happiness Project". In the book, she writes about the ways in which she seeks to cultivate and appreciate the happiness in her life by focusing on a few goals each month. She doesn't seek lofty, airy "Oprah philosophies", rather, she is looking for practical guiding goals for focusing on joy in her everyday life.

One of things she talks about is spending time on things that you love: writing, adventure, outdoors, etc... No matter how silly or insignificant it may seem, it is worth pursuing if it enhances your life and happiness ("If you feel happy, then you are happy!"). So, I decided, I need to Be Rachel. I love to write, journal, read, and edit, rewrite, and write some more (as you can tell by that sentence - I like to write almost too much!). I have always been the kid who wrote way over the page minimum for reports, papers, and projects. In fact, one of my college professors even told me that I had written too much, and crossed out my last full page of work. (Not my proudest moment...)

So I decided to begin a blog (even though I am hesitant to be just another blogger..), mostly to purely engage in my love of writing and journaling. I'm hoping not to write too much about me (although I do want to write more about The Happiness Project), but to focus more on life: particularly, the moments of life that are spent in our garden. About a year ago my husband, Ben, and I moved into the city where we both grew up, and since then, we have been working to create a backyard garden behind the old row house that we rent the second story in. Gardening has so much to offer and to hone - patience, quiet, oasis, and being willing to get dirty.

As we work in the garden and harvest the herbs and spices it produces, it challenges me to focus on the simple goodness of food from the earth, the joy that can come from making your own salsa rather than pulling it off a shelf, and the beauty that a little green in the back yard provides. Simple moments are the rewards of a life spent finding joy in the things around us.

"To find the universal elements enough; to find the air and the water exhilarating; to be refreshed by a morning walk or an evening saunter; to be thrilled by the stars at night; to be elated over a bird's nest or a wildflower in the spring - these are some of the rewards of the simple life."
- John Burroughs

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